Does Your Furnace Smell?

Nobody wants a broken furnace this winter season, so it may be tempting to keep using it even when there is a weird smell. However, any odour emissions from your furnace should not be ignored and considered a point of concern. If your furnace begins to smell, make sure to turn it off immediately and give it a good look.

There are many reasons why a furnace may start to smell. And although some reasons may be small, there are also causes that could potentially harm you and your family. Once your furnace smells off, you can check our guide right here to see what could possibly be causing the stench:

Burning Dust

If your furnace smells like burning dust at the beginning of the winter soon, then it may be harmless. This is what happens when you have not used the furnace in a long time, and it collects dust. Meaning, whatever burning dust thing you smell is quite literally burning dust,

Try to change the air filter or clean out the furnace before using it. It should go away within a couple of days, but if it lasts longer, we recommend you have it checked immediately. if it lasts longer

Rotten Eggs

This is one of the most dangerous odours that your furnace can emit while you are using it. The rotten egg smell that you are smelling is probably natural gas and could suffocate or poison you and your family. This may mean that there is a gas leak in your furnace.

Immediately shut off the furnace, open the windows and get out of the house. Then call a professional like Legacy Heating for some assistance to check your furnace.

Pet Waste

If you have pets and their wastes smell extra strong with the furnace on, chances are they have done the deed near a vent or within the vicinity. This is usually just a strong indicator that somewhere around the house, your pet broke its potty training. Turn off the furnace and look around to clean up the mess before turning it back on.

If the smell is persistent and you have made sure the house is completely clean, then there may be a problem. Get a professional on the line to check the furnace for you.

Burning Metal or Plastic

If you smell something like burning metal or plastic, there is probably a component overheating in your furnace. In other words, a part of the furnace is burning up and needs to be replaced.

There are many reasons for the overheating of a furnace component. If you contact a professional, they should be able to determine the cause for you and help you with the replacement of the part if necessary.


If it smells like sewage when you turn on your furnace, there may be a sewage line that broke or a pipe that burst near the furnace or any vent.  Ideally, you may want to call a plumber for this situation and not use your furnace in the meantime as there could be toxic material and pollutants being spread.


If something feels weird or off about your furnace, you may want to trust your instincts and call a professional. Furnaces should not smell in any way, especially if constantly used. If the smell changes, even if it is not necessarily a bad smell, make sure to immediately call for a professional to have it checked for you.

If you need some help with your furnace in Edmonton, we at Legacy Heating will be glad to help you. We specialize in HVAC systems for new, residential properties. We can do installing, repair, and replacement! Contact us today to book an appointment.

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